Hovering over the city just off Piazzale Michelangelo, the sprawling and stunning resort of Villa La Vedetta is an urban oasis. The property is relatively young (around 150 years old – young in Florentine terms) and was built as a residence for a former ambassador. Today, the opulent five-star estate features a quiet pool, outdoor dining, and million-dollar views of Florence. Ideal for romantic couples with means or families with no budget, this villa is an ideal spot to get away from city chaos while still being quite close by.
The Villa is very kid-friendly and has everything from customized menus, to welcome kits, to babysitting services.
Stately rooms come with epic views, hardwood floors, flat-screen TVs, and plenty of modern art mixed with antique furnishings – a signature of the hotel in general. All rooms come with tea and coffee and guests are given bottled water on arrival.
Pets are more than welcome here. In fact, Fido will be given his/her own bed, food bowl, doggie toys, and even grooming and pet-sitting services.
Stunning bathrooms are awash in marble and have bidets, towel heaters, and Ortigia products. The best part of the bathrooms is that all but one has Jacuzzi tubs!
Made to feel like a homey living room, the lobby area has chic mosaic tiled floors, plush red couches, and a fun mix of antique and contemporary art.
Take time to explore the property. The rooftop terrace is affectionately called the “I Do Terrace” as its been home to more than a few wedding proposals in its time.
The outdoor and exquisitely manicured pool is open from 9 am-6 pm and has a handy pool bar serving up snacks and drinks in the summer.
There’s a small sauna that guests can book for themselves in advance. If you want massages, you can order them directly to your room.
We would be hard-pressed to call this an actual gym, but there are two cardio machines if you need to work up a sweat. We’d advise walking up and down the hill from the villa to the city and back for some leg work.
For breakfast, guests will enjoy an uber-healthy array of options on the main outdoor terrace looking over the city. For lunch and dinner, the hotel restaurant sits by the pool and serves up new twists on classic Tuscan cuisine.
Next to the restaurant is the Onice bar that has a generous apperitivo and a fully equipped selection of wines and liquor.
Being at the top of a hill has its advantages and disadvantages. Walking around can be a little tough if you’re not in shape, and it’ll take a good 10-15 minutes to reach the bottom of the hill to get into the city. The good news is that the hotel has free parking if you rent a car and also provides a free shuttle to and from the city center.
La Loggia (2-minute walk) at Piazzale Michelangelo is a great spot for relaxing away the day with comfort food, outdoor seating, and tasty drinks. If you want a good lunch spot, head down the hill to the cute neighborhood of San Niccolo where you’ll find Osteria Antica Mescita (13-minute walk) with classic Tuscan fare.
If you walk down to San Niccolo, there’s Zoe (14-minute walk) a fun cocktail bar with lots of specials. Also in San Niccolo is Il Rifrullo (13-minute walk), another cocktail spot with craft concoctions.
WHY WE LIKE IT
The hotel is the Tuscan villa of your dreams. There are beautiful gardens, endless views of the city, a relaxing pool, home-cooking, and warm and friendly service. What’s not to like? If there’s a downside, it’s that it’s not in the city and walking to things is a trek. But the hotel provides a free shuttle and free parking so it’s easy to get around nonetheless. Romantic for couples, fun for families, and warm for everyone else, Villa La Vedetta is a relaxing paradise away from the city without being too far away.